The National Strategy: The Final Phase of the Development of the National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy policy document was released late last week. This effort represents the culmination of a collaborative effort by Federal, state, local and tribal governments, non-governmental partners and public stakeholders. This report provides the strategic direction necessary to achieve the vision for the next century – To safely and effectively extinguish fire when needed; use fire where allowable; manage our natural resources; and as a Nation, live with wildland fire.
This policy document includes a set of guidelines that address the following priorities:
Priority # 1: Safe and effective response to wildfires including enhanced wildfire response preparedness with emphasis on both structural protection and wildfire prevention to maximize the effectiveness of initial response.
Priority # 2: Vegetation and fuels management through design and prioritization. Including the increased use of wildland fire to meet resource management objectives and expanding methods to improve forest and rangeland resiliency.
Priority #3: Homeowner and community engagement to take proactive measures prior to a wildfire event.
Priority #4: Utilizing programs tailored to local needs which seek to prevent human-caused ignitions.
Beyond these general guidelines, four national maps have been developed to help with strategic prioritization of effort across the nation. Throughout the rest of the week, I plan to explore these spatial tools and their relevance to the above listed priorities.